Zac Williams Celebrates 150 Games Amidst Blues’ 10-Goal Triumph Over Richmond

Zac Williams Celebrates 150 Games Amidst Blues’ 10-Goal Triumph Over Richmond

An emotional Zac Williams thanked his club and fans for their unwavering support during a challenging period after he reached the milestone of 150 games in the Blues’ impressive 10-goal victory over Richmond on Sunday. Zac Williams Celebrates 150 Games Amidst Blues’ 10-Goal Triumph Over Richmond

Reflecting on His Journey

Speaking to Carlton media earlier in the week, the Wiradjuri star reflected on his recent resurgence in form during the first half of 2024. He shared that it’s the most settled he’s felt since joining the club, after enduring significant family losses and missing the entire previous season due to an ACL injury.

Heartfelt Appreciation

Addressing his teammates in the MCG sheds after the win over the Tigers, Williams extended his heartfelt appreciation to the playing squad, coaches, staff, Baggers faithful, and his family for their unwavering “love and care.”

“I’m a Bagger for life now, after the last 18 months,” Williams declared.

Williams, who reached his 100th game in 2019 while playing as a rebounding half-back with the Giants, has transformed his role under Blues coach Michael Voss. This season, the 29-year-old has emerged as an offensive threat, proving pivotal in Carlton’s strategy.

Milestone Match and Team Triumph

Williams celebrated his milestone match with a goal midway through the second term, contributing to the Blues’ explosive second half that secured their 11th win of the year. This victory places Carlton a game and a half clear in second spot on the ladder.

Post-match, Coach Michael Voss praised Williams for his crucial role in the team and commended his personal growth and resilience.

“He’s had some real off-field challenges, and then football was taken away from him for a while. I think he’s really gone to work on himself. He’s got an unbelievable understanding around gratitude and perspective now and who he is as a person and the family that he has and the people who back him,” Voss said.

“His journey has been a pretty special one to watch. To see where he’s at now, the joy that he’s got on his face and the smile he has and seeing his family out there today was a pretty special moment.”

Overcoming Adversity

Williams faced a scare early in the final term when he landed awkwardly on his ankle in a marking contest in the Blues’ goal square. Despite moving gingerly for a period, he managed to play on, showcasing his determination and resilience.

In Other AFL News: Ben Long Penalized for Striking

After Gold Coast’s stunning 11-point victory over Collingwood, the Suns’ Ben Long has been handed a $3,750 fine ($2,500 with an early plea) by the Match Review Officer for striking Magpie enforcer Brayden Maynard during the second quarter.

Maynard was floored after Long clipped him with a hit to the body, resulting in a free kick at a stoppage. The incident was graded as intentional, with low impact and body contact by the MRO.

Despite this setback, Long played a crucial role in securing the Suns’ win, including a long-range running goal that clinched the final lead change with just three and a half minutes remaining on the clock. His performance was pivotal in snapping a chain of six straight goals from the premiers as they threatened to reclaim the lead.

Suns coach Damien Hardwick praised Long and his teammates for their resilience and ability to “stand up” in critical moments, contributing to a gritty and hard-fought victory.

As the AFL season progresses, both Zac Williams and Ben Long exemplify the resilience and determination that define the sport, inspiring fans and teammates alike with their performances.

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